Black Friday is November 23, 2018, the day after Thanksgiving. It's traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year because it kicks off the holiday season. This season is crucial for the economy because around 30 percent of annual retail sales occur between Black Friday and Christmas. For some retailers, such as jewelers, it's even higher, at almost 40 percent.
Black Friday Sales Statistics
Black Friday is still the busiest shopping day for stores.
In 2016, there were 101.7 million people who braved the crowds. That's more than the 74 million in 2015. The next biggest day was Saturday, when 64 million people went to stores. Only 33 million shopped on Sunday. The fewest, 29 million, left their homes on Thanksgiving Day. In total, 137 million people went to stores over the four-day Black Friday weekend. That's a third more than the 102 million in 2015.
In 2017, online sales rose 18 percent, according to Adobe Systems Inc. Sales hit a record of $7.9 billion. Forty percent of these purchases were done from mobile phones. Market research firm, Criteo, said that's a 29 percent increase over last year.
Holiday Season Sales Statistics
Black Friday is part of the holiday shopping season.
That includes November and December,according to the National Retail Federation. The Federation forecasts that sales will be up 4.1 percent in 2018. It doesn't expect the trade war to cut back on sales because retailers stocked up on inventory. Otherwise, the tariffs would increase on most consumer goods imported from China.
Here are the past 15 years of retail sales data. The average annual increase is 2.5 percent, thanks to the steep 4.6 percent decline in 2008. Before the 2008 financial crisis, the 10-year average annual increase was 3.5 percent.